The SSTA General Secretary Seamus Searson and incoming Vice President Euan Duncan met with the Cabinet Secretary, Angela Constance, to discuss the compelling evidence in the SSTA survey to seek an extension for the new Advanced Highers to be run in tandem with the existing qualifications for an extra year.
Seamus Searson said “the survey confirms the view of many secondary school teachers that more time is needed to bring about these important changes. However, the Minister maintained her position that there would not be an extension of the existing system beyond this year”.
Seamus Searson, went on to say “there will be thousands of teachers disappointed by the Minister’s decision as the overriding issue for SSTA members is that the young people following the existing qualification could be disadvantaged in the switch to the new examination”.
Euan Duncan said “the SSTA survey clearly showed that secondary teachers lacked confidence in their ability to deliver examination materials for new Higher Qualifications (54%) and in assessment procedures for the new Higher (68%). The Minister was of the view that to extend the existing qualification would be too disruptive for schools”.
Seamus Searson added “the SSTA is of the view that to allow schools to delay the implementation of the new Advanced Higher by one year would only be a continuation of the existing situation and would have no impact on schools. There could be a small inconvenience to the Scottish Qualification Agency (SQA) but its role is to support schools and seek the best outcomes of Students. I hope the SQA would agree that the students must come first”.
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